Back-yard chicken trend comes home to roost

  • Article by: KIM PALMER , Star Tribune
  • Updated: October 8, 2013 - 10:09 PM

Back-yard coops are still popular, but some owners get rid of birds when winter approaches.

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mdachsOct. 8, 1311:05 PM

I can't believe that there is a chicken rescue group that keeps chickens until it can find homes for them! Chickens have a purpose - eggs and/or meat. If this group "rescues" a chicken, just send it to a processor and give the meat to a poor person who needs food. Chickens are not companion animals like dogs and cats.

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aislynOct. 9, 13 6:11 AM

I have been a daily volunteer at Chicken Run Rescue for many years, and was there the day that you came to do the initial interview with Mary and Bert. I just have to say, Kim, that you have done a very fine job with this article. As a person who has the joy and pleasure of seeing chickens as friends and companions everyday of my life, both at CRR and at my home, where my tiny flock of 4 spend the winter in the house, lounging where they wish, I applaud you for bringing this subject to light. Work with these birds has brought an endless supply of unconditional love and a vast well of self awareness into my life that I will treasure forever. Thank you again.

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elkiddOct. 9, 13 6:23 AM

what about the people next door to these people ,,chicken coops stink

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livefreeordOct. 9, 13 7:21 AM

I can provide a home in my freezer for anyone who has extra chickens. I've got 8 that I'll be keeping for eggs when they stop laying, they'll make great soup and I'll get another batch. They're nice to have around and fun to watch in the yard, but they're not pets. Spaying chickens is close to the dumbest thing I've ever heard.

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holstjOct. 9, 13 7:54 AM

Collect a $500/chicken license deposit and if the owner needs to unload the bird on a group like CRR because they won't/can't take care of it any longer then the money goes to the group to care for the bird. If/when the chicken dies or is processed for food the owner gets their $500 back. This will greatly reduce the number of pretend farmers out there.

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viqueenfailOct. 9, 13 7:58 AM

I see chickens as friends and companions. And food. Delicious food. Leaner than beef, healthier than fish. I hope my neighbors start raising these feathered friends.

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texas_technomanOct. 9, 13 8:03 AM

I understand that you can actually eat them, if you don't want to keep them for eggs in the winter. They taste like chicken!

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kayinncOct. 9, 13 8:28 AM

Thank you for this article pointing out the problems with the urban chicken fad. I live in North Carolina and the same issues are prevalent here: a constant stream of unwanted chickens, resulting in them being dumped in awful ways. Cities and towns are now allowing chickens, yet most city pounds and county animal control units will not accept the inevitable homeless ones, and some offices will not even take calls about them. They deserve the same respect as dogs, cats, or any other animal that is brought into a home situation.

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spottedjagOct. 9, 13 9:14 AM

Why would you keep them past the egg-laying years? When they can no longer lay, it's time to eat them. Now, I'm not saying that chickens should be neglected. They give us food and should be treated humanely and with respect. But we all must keep in mind that chickens are livestock, not pets.

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ozmon3Oct. 9, 13 9:43 AM

This article is a bit strange to me. Living on a farm when the chickens are done laying they are replaced. If they can't atleast pay for themselves they become stew hens and tasty ones at that. I certainly do enjoy chickens and seeing them do their thing but I don't understand the need to keep feeding them when they are not producing eggs. The cost of feed is not cheap.

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